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Chronicle of the Chinese Emperors: The Reign-By-Reign Record of the Rulers of Imperial China Hardcover – November 1, 1998
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About the Author
Toby Wilkinson was a lecturer in the Department of Archaeology, University of Durham and is presently a fellow of Christ's College, Cambridge, England. He is the author of two important works in Egyptology.
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Top Customer Reviews
It would be unfair to single out Ann Paludan for lack of scholarship, however, because the ages of fragmentation from AD 189-589 and 907-979 suffer from a miserable dearth of research among Western historians of China. Paludan apparently had only three sources in English to go upon, none published within the last 20 years. Sadly, one of them is the famous but thoroughly mythologised "Romance of the Three Kingdoms", the author of which she characteristically names as Zhong Luo Guan rather than Luo Guanzhong.Read more ›
For example, the book often says something such as "following the death of Emperor X, Mr. Y was able to place the infant son of so-and-so on the throne where thereafter Mr. Y dominated Chinese government for the next 50 years" but then say nothing more about the emperor or Mr. Y and the book would just jump to the next emperor.
I can understand that it is beyond the scope of the book, but over and over the author points out that often the power behind the throne was a woman but then never really descibes the woman or how she came to exert such influnce.
Overall I enjoyed the book very much, but the text seemed to raise many questions and skip around. As a result, after I finished the book I felt I knew less about the Chinese Emperors than I did the Roman Emperors or Russian Tzars after reading those books.
In spite of the faults I found with the book, it was still an enjoyable book to read and the pictures were interesting. I would recomend this book to the general reader or somebody who is just starting to learn Chinese History.
I am now looking for a similar book to cover the period from the mythical emperors to the first Qin Emperor.
This book is a record of China's emperors, from Qin Shihuangdi (221BC), to Puyi (deposed in 1911AD). The story is told in the clear, instructive prose of author Ann Paludan, and the story is supported and enhanced by "368 illustrations with 126 in color", as proclaimed in the dust jacket blurbs. Among the illustrations, one finds photographs of historical locations, art works, and tombs, as well as maps and portraits of the emperors.
This is not an exhaustive history, but an informative, easy to follow -- thanks to timelines-- overview. It is quite possible that the basis for many school reports will be found here.
It may come as a surprise to many, but this book is enjoyable to read. It is a good choice for a parent, or a student seeking to get acquainted with the Chinese Imperial System, which existed for 2000 years.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This is an excellent history book. It is well organized and a useful reference work for projects and information purposes. It is also well enough written to be an enjoyable read. Read morePublished 5 months ago by Hayley Keeton
Well-written, thorough, fairly readable. This is certainly not light reading or for the reader interested in a quick afternoon browse. Read morePublished 10 months ago by James Yanni
I'm an expat living in China. I love history but not a big reader. This book nicely integrates pictures various perspectives (including what was happening in Europe) to tell the... Read morePublished 11 months ago by R. Beck
Despite the apparent shortcomings, great survey of personalities.Published 15 months ago by Julian Schofield
This is a great book because it highlights very real, key events and individuals who've shaped Chinese history over the centuries. Read morePublished on January 1, 2014 by will5967
I found this on a trip to Beijing and decided to order it so it would get delivered to my home and I would not have to carry it! Read morePublished on May 17, 2013 by Susan C. Parks
very good book, very usefull, easy to understand ,very informatif , my family like this book so much , good lookingPublished on April 6, 2013 by haryanto hidayat
This is one of an excellent series that gives you potted histories. All have concise, well-written text, are lavishly illustrated, and have good sub-articles. Read morePublished on March 7, 2013 by Dr Garry
This richly illustrated volume looks at the lives of all 157 emperors from Qin Shihuangdi, builder of the Great Wall in 220 BC up to Puyi, 'the last emperor', deposed in 1911. Read morePublished on November 12, 2011 by sally tarbox